Molecular mechanisms of signal transduction in heart

Carlson group

Our group aims to identify molecular mechanisms underlying the development of cardiac disease and to develop novel therapeutic approaches to block disease progression.

In particular, our group studies anchored signaling, with focus on the syndecans, calcium/calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CaMKII) and various ion channels and exchangers involved in excitation-contraction coupling; the process which initiates the heartbeat. We are especially interested in understanding changes in the activity of these proteins during heart failure development. We have also some projects focused on examinations of skeletal muscle

During the last years, we have identified novel molecular mechanisms regulating the activities of the sodium-calcium exchanger 1 (NCX1), ryanodine receptor 2 (RYR2), and sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase 2 (SERCA2), and developed pro-drugs which modulate their activities. Recently, we have also identified the syndecan-2 and syndecan-4 interactomes, and several novel signaling pathways involved in cardiomyocyte growth and fibrosis.

In our projects, we use different molecular biology techniques combined with peptide technology. In particular, we employ Western blotting, immunoprecipitation, cell culture, transfection, mutated proteins, various imaging techniques, mass spectrometry, Biacore, ELISA-based assays, kinase and phosphatase assays, bioinformatics, adenovirus, adeno-associated virus, neonatal and adult cardiomyocytes, peptide arrays, peptide in-solution, and tissue from different animal heart failure models.

Figure 1 (left): (Finsen et al., Plos One, 6(12):e28302, 2011)

Figure 2 (right): (Wanichawan et al.,Biochem J, 473(15):2413-23, 2016)

The Carlson group consists of scientists from IEMR who work closely with a high-profile network of international and national collaborators, including the core facilities for structural biology, advanced light microscopy and proteomics at Oslo University Hospital.

Group members

Latest publications

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Wanichawan P, Skogestad J, Lunde M, Støle TP, Stensland M, Nyman TA, Sjaastad I, Sejersted OM, Aronsen JM, Carlson CR (2021)
Design of a Proteolytically Stable Sodium-Calcium Exchanger 1 Activator Peptide for In Vivo Studies
Front Pharmacol, 12, 638646
PubMed 34163352 DOI 10.3389/fphar.2021.638646
Mathiesen SB, Lunde M, Stensland M, Martinsen M, Nyman TA, Christensen G, Carlson CR (2020)
The Cardiac Syndecan-2 Interactome
Front Cell Dev Biol, 8, 792
PubMed 32984315 DOI 10.3389/fcell.2020.00792
Rønning SB, Carlson CR, Aronsen JM, Pisconti A, Høst V, Lunde M, Liland KH, Sjaastad I, Kolset SO, Christensen G, Pedersen ME (2020)
Syndecan-4-/- Mice Have Smaller Muscle Fibers, Increased Akt/mTOR/S6K1 and Notch/HES-1 Pathways, and Alterations in Extracellular Matrix Components
Front Cell Dev Biol, 8, 730
PubMed 32850844 DOI 10.3389/fcell.2020.00730
Herum KM, Romaine A, Wang A, Melleby AO, Strand ME, Pacheco J, Braathen B, Dunér P, Tønnessen T, Lunde IG, Sjaastad I, Brakebusch C, McCulloch AD, Gomez MF, Carlson CR, Christensen G (2020)
Syndecan-4 Protects the Heart From the Profibrotic Effects of Thrombin-Cleaved Osteopontin
J Am Heart Assoc, 9 (3), e013518
PubMed 32000579 DOI 10.1161/JAHA.119.013518
Skogestad J, Aronsen JM, Tovsrud N, Wanichawan P, Hougen K, Stokke MK, Carlson CR, Sjaastad I, Sejersted OM, Swift F (2020)
Coupling of the Na+/K+-ATPase to Ankyrin B controls Na+/Ca2+ exchanger activity in cardiomyocytes
Cardiovasc Res, 116 (1), 78-90
PubMed 30949686 DOI 10.1093/cvr/cvz087
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Group news

Doctoral Thesis

Doctoral Thesis, Sabrina Bech Mathiesen